The Buffalo shooter, like many shooters, has become the subject of conversation in many different kinds of circles but the most important one is the one rarely discussed.
Buried beneath the political and ideological screeds posted by the shooter is the real issue of mental health. The mental health of anyone who would walk into a location and begin shooting innocent people is already a clear indicator, to begin with, but we can also add testimony from the people who knew the Buffalo shooter. As RedState previously covered, his classmates noted bizarre behavior from dressing oddly to spouting extremist language.
As it turns out, Fox News reported that the same shooter (whose name I won’t repeat here) had undergone a mental health evaluation for more than a day after he had made general threats to the community in 2021:
A spokesperson for the New York State Police said troopers responded to Susquehanna High School in Conklin, N.Y., “to investigate a report that a 17-year-old student had made a threatening statement.” The spokesperson did not identify the subject by name, but said there was no target associated with the threat.
“The state police responded,” Gramaglia said during Sunday’s press conference. “They investigated. They interviewed the subject, and they felt it was appropriate at that time to have that individual brought in for a mental health evaluation. State police did their job to the fullest that they could at that time.”
Gramaglia later added: “He was evaluated, and then he was released. As far as when we say ‘On the radar,’ there was nothing picked up on the state police intelligence, nothing that was picked up on the FBI intelligence. Nobody called in. Nobody called any complaints.”
Meaning that the shooter had actually been collected by authorities for his behavior at one point, evaluated, and released without much more.
The bottom line is that the shooter was on the radar before the shooting happened, and he was on the radar for mental health issues bringing him to make threats of violence. Still, nothing was seemingly done for him.
This is a story that has been repeated over and over again with mass shooters. At the heart of almost every story is a mental health problem that was never addressed despite it being well known. In this instance, it was known by authorities.
The conversation has gone many different ways. Some want to talk about ideology, some want to talk about gun control, but few are addressing the elephant in the room of mental illness and the fact that nothing was done when the signs were all right there.